Episode 666 - Evil

Dec 18, 2023

We're up to number 666 Quackcasts so our topic this time is evil! Evil is a complicated subject, we all think we know what it is but we really don't, there are just so many aspects to it so it's very hard to fully encompass. Broadly “evil” can be something very subjective: anything that runs counter to our own well-being as individuals- people, things and situations that do us harm. You can expand that to your property, your family, friends, acquaintances, pets etc. As that definition gets bigger though to encompass your neighbours, street, suburb, city, state, and country it becomes more objective bit by bit, till we come to the idea that “evil” is something that runs counter to human rights, or the existence of life in general, or the right to self determination etc. A more objective view of evil.

Topics and Show Notes

But there's MORE! There's an embedded idea in our culture that “evil” is caused by external forces, smoothing that's quite popular in a few religions and myths. Characters like the devil, Satan, Lucifer, Beelzebub, or demons which encapsulate, perpetuate, influence, control and characterise “evil”. They embody it, they work to spread it, they influence people with it. The idea is that everything evil in the world is caused by them. It's often wrongly assumed that all religions are structured like the Abrahamic ones (Judaism, Islam, and Christianity) with a good and evil duality and “evil” being associated with the underworld in some way, but that's really just caused by looking at them from a mainly Christian lens. Death and the underworld aren't evil in most religions and rather than having strictly good or evil characters, “evil” is usually a matter of context and any character can be a mixture of both good and evil.

There's a good reason for this type of externalisation of evil though- by characterising it in such a symbolic way it helps us better understand different aspects of it and look at it from different angles. After-all characterising, symbolising and simplifying is how we better understand all reality, that's what's behind mathematics, physics, and all sciences really.

The last big evil factor we chat about is something we could also call “malice”, that is the active act of deliberately committing evil as opposed to simply doing something that is defined as “evil” for, another reason, i.e. taking your parking spot because they need it, killing a person in the line of duty as a police officer, not holding the elevator doors open for you because they were in a hurry… Instead they do those things because they want to cause harm and they enjoy it. This is how we like to portray psychopaths and serial killers in fiction. But even with malice there is a spectrum: on one end the person does the thing because they want to cause pain and distress, on the other end they do it simply because their own needs and pleasure are all that matter, they know that they cause you to suffer but that's irrelevant to them.

So the big take away from this is that there are a lot of different ways of thinking about “evil” and it's often a spectrum rather that just one solid thing. But how do you define evil? How do you use it in your creations?

This week Gunwallace has given us a theme inspired by On The Edge - Star Trek Adventures - I wager 20 Quatloos on the Vulcan… This is an epic, awesome intro, it builds steam from a portentous beginning with digital French horns and strings, gathering urgency and energy as it rockets into something grander and more dangerous. Trumpets blast us to a new dimension.
Please note that the ‘comic’ is by Tantz, Banes, Ozoneocean, Genejoke, not just me. And if other people want to submit drawings to it we would be more than happy to look at them and make it a true community project.

Topics and shownotes


Featured comic:
Romancing Lucifer - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2023/dec/12/featured-comic-romancing-lucifer/

Featured music:
On The Edge - Star Trek Adventures - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/On_The_Edge/ - by Gunwallace, rated T.

Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean
Kawaiidaigakusei - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/kawaiidaigakusei
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Banes/

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Episode 665 - Eyes

Dec 10, 2023

2 likes, 2 comments

This week our talk is an art one: eyes! We talk about how to draw them, adding meaning and expression, the way different cultures use them, different styles for doing eyes, reflection, shadow, focus and a million other things!

Episode 664 - Parody and satire

Dec 4, 2023

1 like, 1 comment

We're talking about parody and its evil twin satire. There are good parodies and bad ones but we feel the better parodies are the indirect ones that make fun of and exaggerate the theme or the vibe of something rather that simply doing a direct copy but with jokes; For example, Austin Powers and Kingsmen are indirect parodies of spy films, Blazing saddles is an indirect parody of Westerns, The Princess Bride and Shrek are indirect parodies of fairy tales, Galaxy Quest and the Orville (first season) are indirect parodies of TV SciFi shows etc.

Episode 663 - AI and The Duck

Nov 27, 2023

5 likes, 2 comments

This Quackcast tackles the issue of AI comics on Drunk Duck. We're discussing either a ban or rules that would enable them to be posted under conditions. We also talk about AI generated imagery and the issues with it and well as its future and the relationship between it and artists. This is a very complicated and much misunderstood subject.

Episode 662 - Drunkduck tales

Nov 20, 2023

6 likes, 2 comments

Webcomic communities have different cultures, but why and where do they come from? DD's culture is pretty chill, we're reasonably neutral and accepting of a wide range of ideas and perspectives, we're egalitarian to a very high degree, we don't do cliques, we don't exclude, we don't tend to jump on culture wars… We don't like tribalism of partisanship. So why are we like that?

Episode 661 - Steaks... stakes

Nov 13, 2023

1 like, 4 comments

Stakes are a part of a story. What does a character want? What means the most to the character? What are they after, what do they care about? Stakes can be really subjective like that and they can also be objective and more universal like death, debt, a threat to a home, nation, planet or even the universe. The most important thing though is that you can communicate the value of those stakes to the audience! It doesn't actually matter WHAT the stakes are as long as the audience understands that they're important.

Episode 660 - The Multiverse

Nov 6, 2023

2 likes, 0 comments

Multiverses are really popular in fiction right now, eg. Dr Strange into the mouth of Madness, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, The Flash, Everything Everywhere All at Once, Rick and Morty, and The Loki TV series (which I love). So what is a multiverse and why is it used? Basically when multiple universes coexist at the same time, either there are a few and they're widely different or they are infinite and every possibility exists. In the real world the idea of multiple universes is purely theoretical and a relatively minor part of various quantum physics theories, while in fiction it's an important tool for mashing together separate IPs that wouldn't normally fit together and also telling interesting stories with parallel elements and “what-if” scenarios.

Episode 659 - Happy Halloween 2023

Oct 30, 2023

5 likes, 2 comments

Happy Halloween! The time of spookiness and ghosts. Spooks messed up the cast so the sound quality is really bad I'm afraid, I tried to do what I could to fix it though. This week Banes, I, and Tantz are chatting about Halloween and related subjects like scary movies and things. I personally only like comedy horror, or whacky horror films where things are taken too far so I don't identify with the characters and feel bad because of it. I find I identify with characters in film far too much (if it's realistic), the genre doesn't matter, it can be comedy, horror, murder mystery, romance whatever, so that means if the tone is too tragic and depressing it usually makes me feel extremely down. For that reason a lot of horror doesn't appeal to me unless I can distance myself from the characters somehow. So comedy helps, or if it's super-over-the-top and whacky like The Nun.

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